04 January 2011

Connie leadership rigged?

The fix is in and it must be getting really smelly and obvious if VOCM – aka voice of the cabinet minister  - is reporting it:
A man claiming to be contemplating a run at the Tory leadership doesn't like the process. The potential candidate, who prefers to be unnamed for the time being, says he has as much or more experience than Kathy Dunderdale. The man cites a lack of public notice and public disclosure as reasons for his displeasure, and goes so far as to call the process "rigged" and "perverted."
Nominations opened December 30 and will close on January 10. The potential candidates point out the Progressive Conservative office was closed for several of those days because of the holiday schedule. He also says there is a $5,000 fee and a requirement of fifty party signatures to seek the party's top spot. All this, he suggests, makes it virtually impossible to apply for the PC leadership, unless they are already in.
VOCM got a comment from convention co-chair Shawn Skinner to the effect that “he arbitrary timeframe for party nominations had to be set based on the party's constitution, and that everyone should have known from the time Williams announced his resignation on November 25 that the party would be seeking another leader.”

Some observations:

1.  Where is the party constitution?  If, as Shawn Skinner claims, the whole process is dictated by the party’s constitution surely he and his mates could have posted the constitution for all to see.  It’s called being transparent and open.

As it stands, the Conservative Party website doesn’t give any information on the constitution at all.  Anyone checking the website wouldn’t even know that there was a constitution.

2.  The news release announcing the nomination process gives absolutely no details on the requirements.  It doesn’t give any links to go to find information.  This 5K and 50 signatures would come as a complete surprise to anyone who had a week or so to scrape everything together.

In fact, here’s the complete news release, as issued December 30:
Progressive Conservative Party President John Babb and Convention Co-chairs Minister Shawn Skinner and Minister Joan Burke announced that nominations for the leadership will open at 12:00 noon, today, Thursday, December 30, 2010, and will close at 12:00 noon on Monday, January 10, 2011.
Delegate selection meetings to commence after the close of nominations. Details related to the date and location of the leadership convention will be announced at a later date.
There’s a contact name and number on there as well but other than that information – nominations are open and that they close with more information to follow there is exactly zilch in the way of meaningful information.

Well whaddyaknow Update: Turns out there is a link in the upper right hand corner that gives a bunch of forms.  Essentially, the information there is the same as the stuff in the VO stuff:  a 5k deposit and 50 party members in good standing.

If you want the constitution you have to contact the office.

3. “fifty party signatures”  WTF?  This is a party that has open nomination meetings:  anyone can go and vote.  So how exactly does one find out who are “party” people to contact so that one could collect signatures?

- srbp -